Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

Foucault's Turn From Phenomenology: Implications for Dance Studies


No critic of phenomenology, arguably, has been more influential in prefiguring recent discourses on power, gender, and sexuality that have emerged in dance studies in recent decades than the philosopher-historian-critic Michel Foucault. The number of dance scholars directly citing Foucault, and the number influenced indirectly by his ideas through intermediary theorists such as Judith Butler—perhaps the single most popular one—is so large as to require an essay of its own just to survey. Virtually every analysis of choreographic practice that has addressed these topics since the 1980s has drawn directly or indirectly on Foucault's theories. Indeed, the very mention of the term “discipline” in current dance scholarship (and many related fields as well) more or less automatically makes reference to Foucault's genealogical study of incarceration, Surveiller et punir. Naissance de la prison, translated into English as Discipline and Punish: Birth of the Prison, and, in particular to the chapter, “Les corps dociles” or “Docile Bodies” (Foucault 1975, 137–171; 1975/1995, 135–170).

Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Mark Franko . 2011. “Archeological Choreographic Practices: Foucault and Forsythe.” History of Human Sciences 24(4): 97112.

Gary Gutting . 2005a. Foucault: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

William S Sax . 2002. Dancing the Self: Personhood and Performance in the Pandav Lila of Garhwal. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Dance Research Journal
  • ISSN: 0149-7677
  • EISSN: 1940-509X
  • URL: /core/journals/dance-research-journal
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 2
Total number of PDF views: 23 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 215 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 24th September 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.